Wednesday, January 2, 2013

How To Trim A Dogs Nails

Trimming your pets nails can be really scary! Not only that if you have your veterinary office do it every 3-4 weeks that can really start to get pricey! Today I’m going to show you how to trim your dogs nails and even show you how I do it by myself.

Since Pharaoh/Bueller was a kitten/puppy I’ve done my best to handle their paws and nails. Sometimes I would pick at Bueller’s nails to get him ready for me to trim them and get use to having pressure on his nails.

Trimming every 3-4 weeks is ideal for pets. Try to be conscious of the length of your pet’s nails. We don’t want their nails getting too long. Nails that are too long can sometimes twist their toes into uncomfortable positions, making walking uncomfortable, or with cats their claws can grow all the way around and pierce their pads. 

You want to avoid hitting the quick. The quick is the small blood vessel that supplies the nail nutrients. If hit bleeding can be hard to stop in some situations.

How I trim my dog's nails.

How To Cut A Dog's Nails

The trick to trimming dog’s nails is going piece by piece. Don’t just knock off a huge chunk of nail! Let’s go slow and trim until we see a small dot. That dot is the beginning of the cavity that blood vessels and nerves are located. We want to stop when we hit that dot! 

White nails: It’s easy to see the quick in a white nail. You’ll want to avoid hitting the red blood vessel and the tiny gap before it. Look closely and you can see the cavity that the blood vessel resides in.

Black nails: A little bit tricky but with practice you’ll be a pro. Remember that dot with black nails! Trim piece by piece until you see it, then stop. The dot is a lot more noticeable in pigmented nails.

If you do trim the nail too short and it bleeds don’t panic here are some things to stop the bleeding:

  • All Purpose Flour
  • Cornstarch
  • Bar of Soap
  • Johnson’s baby powder
  • Chapstick
  • Kwik Stop: Sold at your local vet & pet stores. (Most effective)

Coat the bleeding area with the product and apply pressure for 5-10 seconds. If the bleeding does not seem to be stopping after five minutes call your veterinarian.

Veterinary offices use a yellow powder called kwik stop available for purchase at your veterinary office and pet stores.

Personally I do not like the dermal you can’t use it alone and it takes forever. If I use a dremal I will cut the nails and then finish with the dremal to get rid of any sharp edges.

It’s easy to get your pet’s fur tangled in the dremal and we want to make this experience quick and painless so our pet doesn’t mind it again.

Taking your dog on walks on cement roads will help file down the nail and not make it as sharp.

The more you cut your pet’s nails the shorter those quicks will be. If you don’t trim your pet’s nails often the quicks will be much longer.

A good restraint is shown in the video if you have a helper.

Not discussed was a way to trim a larger dog's nails if you do not want to restrain them on their side. You can trim a larger dog's nails while they are standing up. Bend at at the knee (as you would if you were cleaning a horse's hoof) and trim the nails as they are being held up.

Give lots of treats after your nail trimming sessions!

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© Faris Jaclyn I Littlest Pet Shop Photography

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